Here’s How Many VEGANS Are In The World (2023)

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How many vegans are in the world right now, in 2023?

For the last sixty years, veganism has been the minority of another minority; vegetarianism.

But, for the last four years, we’ve seen these ‘minorities’ taking over the world.

In this article, you’ll find out:

  • The definition of ‘veganism.’
  • Top vegan countries in the world right now.
  • The total percentage of vegans in the world in 2023.

Without further ado…

What is Veganism?

The term ‘vegan’ was coined in 1944 by Donald Watson, co-founder of ‘The Vegan Society.’

Initially, the term was used to describe non-dairy vegetarians.

However, in 1951 the Vegan Society updated the definition to:…“exclude all forms of animal exploitation…”

The definition of Veganism
The definition of VEGANISM according to the Vegan Society.

Nowadays, the term vegan encapsulates several variations around animal exploitation and the consumption of animal-based products (food, fashion, etc.)

For more details on that, see the end of the article.

From Vegetarian To Vegan

The transition from vegetarians to vegans has been accelerated by global movements such as ‘Veganuary’.

The movement encourages people to try vegan products for ‘January and beyond’ and has grown five times since its launch in 2014.

nr of vegan people in the world in 2020
The number of people signing to the ‘Veganuary’ campaign. Source: BBC.

Similarly, a Google search for ‘veganism’ has seen an increase of 580 percent over the last five years.

At the end of 2019, the term received almost five times more interest than the ‘vegetarian’ and ‘cruelty-free’ searches combined.

nr of vegans in the world -
The term ‘vegan’ is 5 times up when compared to similar terms.

According to The Economist, only 3.4 percent of Americans were vegetarian in 2015.

Of those, only 0.4 percent were vegans.

A similar survey run in Japan in 2014 showed that 4.7 percent of the population was vegetarian.

The transition from vegetarians to vegans has been so profound that 2019 was declared by The Economist ‘The Year of the Vegan’.

Right now, the total number of vegans, vegetarians, and all related categories, is close to 14 percent of the world population.

Before we look at the total number of vegans in the world, let’s see their distribution in the US, UK, India, and Australia.

Number Of Vegans in the US in 2022

In the US, the number of vegans went up 0.4 percent to almost 3.5 percent in the last two years.

According to the ‘Vegetarianism in America’ study published by Vegetarian Times Magazine, the percentage of vegans in the US is rising fast.

Vegetarians in the US
7.3 million Americans are vegetarians.

According to the Statista Global Consumer Survey on diets and nutrition in the U.S. in 2022, about 5%, equal to 15.5 million people in the US, follow a vegetarian-based diet.

However, only 2 million of them – that’s approximately 0.5 percent – lead a purely vegan lifestyle.

Number of Vegans in the UK in 2022

Similarly, the number of vegans in the U.K. has quadrupled over the last five years.

According to the ‘The Food & You’ survey run by the Food Standards Agency (FSA) and the National Centre for Social Science Research, there were 150,000 vegans in 2014.

Vegan Stats
Over the last five years, the number of searches for the ‘veganism’ topic in the UK has increased.

Almost one million vegans were recorded in the U.K. in 2022, accounting for almost 1.5 percent of the country’s total population.

Number of Vegans In India – 2022

According to a UN FAO report, India has the lowest rate of meat consumption in the world, thanks to its religion (Hinduism).

At nearly 47 percent, Indian Hindus comprise the majority of the 1.4 billion population.

Vegan Stats
Indian vegetarians (percentage distribution) according to the National Family Health Survey of 2019.

As such, in 2022, there were around 550 million vegetarians in India.

However, as only 1 percent of Hindus are strict vegans, the total number of vegans in India is approximately 5.5 million.

Number of Vegans In Australia – 2022

According to an ‘ABC Australia Talks’ National Survey, only 1 percent of Australians identify as vegans.

Of the 25,788 people who participated in the survey, 3 percent stated they were vegetarian.

Vegan Stats
Only 1 percent of Australians are vegans, according to a 2019 study by ABC Radio.

Moreover, an overwhelming 89 percent of the national survey’s respondents said they were meat-eaters.

Other Countries With Large Numbers of Vegans

To understand Bette the vegan population growth, we must look at how vegans spread across other ‘representative’ countries.

The following figures were compiled from local reports and studies and included diet and ethical vegans.

  • Austria in 2013 – according to a report conducted by the Kurier, there were 0.5 percent estimated vegans.
  • Canada 2018 – a Canadian survey has estimated that 2.1 percent of Canadian adults consider themselves vegans.
  • Germany 2016 – a study run by the German Nutrition Society has estimated that almost 1 percent of the population (a bit over 810,000) were vegans.
  • Israel 2015 – according to a survey conducted by Globes and Israel’s Channel 2 News, 5 percent of Israelis were following a vegan lifestyle.
  • Italy 2016 – According to the Italian Research Institute, Eurispes, 1 percent of the Italian population was vegan that year. Since then, the number has decreased.
  • Sweden 2014 – A poll by Demoskop showed that 4 percent of respondents were vegan.
  • Switzerland 2017 – according to research by DemoSCOPE, 3 percent of the population was estimated to be vegan.

Number of Vegans In The World In 2023

Based on the above figures – adjusted with the speed of growth and other comparative statistics – the approximate number of vegans in the world is less than 1.1 percent of the world population.

The most recent United Nations estimates show that the world population reached 8 billion in December 2022.

Therefore, the total number of vegans worldwide in 2023 is approximately 88 million.

Are Vegans Taking Over?

Current data shows that the number of vegans continues to rise fast.

veganism adverts in London underground

  • The number of vegans in the U.S. grew by 600 percent, from 4 million in 2014 to 20 million in 2018.
  • Between 2011 and 2016, Italy had the fastest-growing vegan population, with a growth of 94.4 percent.
  • According to Google Trends, the U.K. was the country most interested in ‘veganism’ in 2019, followed by Australia and New Zealand.

However, to take over the world, the vegan growth we’ve seen over the last four-five years will have to continue for at least three decades.

Different Kinds of Vegans?

In simple terms, a vegan is a person that abstains from using any animal-based products.

But, the advent of veganism into fashion has split vegans into:

Vegans by DIET vs. Vegans by LIFESTYLE

Vegan Fashion Week
Vegan Fashion Week catwalk, 2019.

Vegans by diet are also known as dietary vegans or strict vegetarians.

Their main concern is avoiding animal-derived products from diets, such as meat, eggs, and dairy products.

Lifestyle vegans are also known as ethical vegans or moral vegetarians.

They extend the vegan philosophy beyond diets into as many areas of their lives as possible.

Vegan fashion, in particular, has become very important to this segment of vegans.

Vegan Statistics FAQs

What percentage of the world’s population will be vegan in 2023?

1.1% of the world’s population is vegan. Therefore, the total number of vegans worldwide in 2023 will be approximately 88 million.

Is the number of vegans increasing?

The data shows that the number of vegans continues to rise at an accelerated rate. The number of vegans in the U.S. grew by 600 percent between 2014 to 2018. Similarly, Italy’s vegan population grew by 94.4% from 2011 to 2016. UK, Australia, and New Zealand show the same pattern.

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Regardless of classification criteria, reasons, or types, the number of vegans worldwide is rising.

We see significant pro-veganism movements in Western countries, Eastern Europe, Australia, and Israel.

Moreover, as cultures and landscapes change for the better, veganism has also gained momentum in Latin America, Asia, and Africa.

Finally, if the movement maintains the current growth rate, over the next ten years, at least 1 in 10 people will be vegan.

After years of managing hundreds of fashion brands from London's office of a global retailer, Mandy has ventured into freelancing. Connected with several fashion retailers and media platforms in the US, Australia, and the UK, Mandy uses her expertise to consult for emerging fashion brands create top-notch content as an editorial strategist for several online publications.

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  1. Umm I’m pretty sure India has 1.38 Billion not 1.2 Billion. 1.2 Billion data is of 2011.
    Also, percentage of Hindus is 79.8 not 44 percent as you mentioned. The percentage of Hindi speaking people is 44 percent. Hindi and Hindu are very different things, I hope you understand that one is a language and other is a religion.

  2. The number of vegans in Australia must be much higher now – Vegans in Australia Facebook group has over 60,000 members and that’s only a Facebook group.

    I’m surprised how many people I speak to at Speakers Corner are not on Facebook, about 90% of the people I get to ask so that implies the number of vegans in Australia must be at least 10 times higher than 60,000.

  3. I’m more interested to know more about the sustainability aspect of veganism. There are compelling arguments on both sides, but I believe veganism is the way forward when it comes to climate change.

    • I think you are right! I cannot imagine in God’s world the slaughter of animals for eating purposes! I can imagine lacto-vegetarians, although I am a vegan. If an animal tried to harm me I might think differently. But they never do!

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  5. Could you please share the sources you used on the numbers of vegetarians and vegans in different parts of the world?

  6. Veganism is finally going mainstream! Here in Scotland, the Scottish government agreed to include plant-based milk alternatives on a government-funded nursery and early learning milk scheme from August 2021! How amazing is that?

        • “Cows’ milk is for baby cows. ” Indeed, Which is why it is one of nature’s great sources of nutrition for Humans as well. There is no exclusivity when it comes down to what animals eat. You might just as well say potatoes are meant to feed young potato plants, Eggs are for chickens. On the subject of chickens, Can foxes eat them? Are chickens meant for foxes? Are other animals allowed to eat chickens?
          It gets ridiculous when you start assigning potential food sources to the host animal. That is not how nature or life works.

          • Last i checked we weren’t bovines, and just because other animals – scavangers – scavange doesn’t make it healthy. Cats shouldn’t eat cheese or dairy for example, or dogs chocolate but often you’ll catch them trying.

  7. The health impact of veganism is massive. many studies show how a vegan diet can lower cholesterol levels, decrease the chance of cancer, and help in managing diabetes. If the world go vegan, we could save 8 million human lives by 2050.

    • But with those studies is that correlation or causation because the type of person that would have a vegan lifestyle is more likely to be healthy in other ways and they are more likely to be wealthy and wealth has been shown to help health outcomes.

      • They have studied vegan diets and controlled for other factors (such as exercise, socioeconomic status etc), at least lowering cholesterol is true. You can look up the studies.

  8. The vegan stats and estimates are quite limited. How come there aren’t any other studies on the number of vegans besides The Vegan Society reports?! Does anyone know any other source?

  9. Despite all the benefits of veganism for the animals and (arguably) the environment, I really think that vegan diet is not for everybody. It very much depends on the genetics of your body. That being said, I think we can solve that problem through modern agriculture and tech-based food production (see ‘Modern Meadow’ for example).

  10. Thanks for the detailed report. though we can’t talk about the number of vegans and not about the animals. Since early 1970, the number of free-living animals has declined by more than 80%. Instead, a small number of farmed animals (mainly cows and pigs) dominate the global biomass. They account for 60% of mammal species by mass, 36% goes to humans, and only 4% are free-living animals. A bit shocking how we have altered our environment and affected the biosphere, not for good!

  11. It is a trend. Social media is now packed with so-called “vegan influencers”. Just type #vegan in Insta and there are more than 100 million posts! But I reckon how many people really believe in that?

  12. Hello there, me again 😀 A bit off-topic, but could someone explain the difference between vegetarian and vegan, in particular in fashion? I’ve seen many terms used which are confusing, like vegan leather, vegetarian leather, and vegetarian tanned leather

    • The difference between vegans and vegetarians is this:vegans are strict vegetarians(nothing animal, no honey, no eggs, no dairy, no leather etc), when there are all types of vegetarians, some may eat honey, dairy, eggs, and use leather.

    • Sorry, you’re absolutely wrong. Now Indian Population is 1.38 billion people. 19% Indian people are vegan or semi vegan and 7% are pure vegan. 32% Indian are pure vegetarian. Some Others are lacto vegetarian, semi vegetarian, ovvo vegetarian etc.. And rest of all are non-vegetarian. 44% hindu people are vegetarian, [(59% Indian are speak Hindi language. Hindi and Hindu aren’t same thing. Hindi is most spoken language and Hindu is 3rd biggest religion in the World and in India it’s number 1 biggest religion.)] 8-10% Muslim are vegetarian, 7% Christian are vegetarian, 59% Shikh are vegetarian, 97% Jain are vegetarian, 39% Boudha are vegetarian, 67% parsi are vegetarian….
      Most of vegan and vegetarian people are live in West and Northern west India. And most of non-vegetarian are live in East, Northeast and Southern India. India is least meat eaters country in the World. 2nd is Bangladesh. East neighbour country of India. India is least meat eating country because 77% or more non-vegetarian people out of total 100% are also love to eating more vegetables and fruits in daily basis. Indian meat eaters aren’t like western meat eaters. (Especially American and Australian meat eaters)……

  13. The market for vegan products is way higher than this though. Many non-vegans (even meat-eaters) are now trying vegan diet and products since for their health benefits.

    • Plant based diets have been around for far longer (even a tribute over 5000 years old were plant based), veganism is just a term founded in 1944 as one was needed inregards to people who take on a plant based diet and ethics for the sake of animals.

  14. Best to be Vegan, if not strict Vegetarian. Just don’t eat murdered animals or their derivatives (gelatine, stock, tallow -fats and oils, nor any food cross-contaminated pertinently) and your conscience will elevate. Avoid replacements like dairy and eggs, when possible though pray/think in grace whenever consuming these items…

  15. I’ve been a vegan for 30 years and I’m a 70 year old female whose also an animal activist. By being vegan the correct way you enjoy bountiful health and save the environment from climate change. Plus save millions of animals suffering till death on factory farms. I’m in perfect health and guilt free for the rest of my life

  16. That’s beautiful! Praise the lord! I don’t consider eating them. I remember what someone said,”feed us what you are feeding the animals don’t feed us the animals or any animal ingredients!

  17. That’s really great thanks for sharing! Another thing i want to share here, Vegans tend to have more energy than meat-eaters, which is perfect for late-night romps with your special someone. (Guys: The cholesterol and saturated animal fat found in meat, eggs, and dairy “products” don’t just clog the arteries to your heart. Over time, they impede blood flow to other vital organs as well.) Plus, what’s sexier than someone who’s not only hot but also compassionate?

  18. Your calculation makes a lot of sense. I’ve seen Veganbits trying a similar kind of calculation about ‘how many vegans are in the World – in 2020 – but I wasn’t sure how correct they were. Their website says:

    “Considering that there are 1.2 billion people living in Africa, and 7.53 billion people living worldwide, it’s easy to understand why the vegan population worldwide is closer to 0.1%. So by our calculations, there are about 75,300,000 vegans in the world.”

    However, that calculation makes zero sense to me so thank you for clarifying this for us!

  19. You didn’t take into account the number of vegans and vegetarians who return to a healthy omnivorous diet… which is estimated at over 80%!!

  20. I am from India and I can definitely say that this article gets it right spot on, about Indian vegans, habits and numbers as well.

  21. What is the most significant purpose to become a Vegan? Apparently, is the first order of command in the Royal Vegan Society – yes, there’s such a society invented by someone. It is all about becoming a vegan because of a spiritual inclination within the depth of love and atonement (whatever that means) with the higher echelon (whatever again)… and all that kind of bullshit. In reality, you don’t need a vegan royal society to be vegan. All you need is to stop eating animals or wear them for fashion. That’s all.

  22. There are compelling arguments on both sides, but I believe veganism is the way forward when it comes to climate change.

  23. I wish someone from your website would contact me. I’ve just had notice from Facebook that this post, dated 23 July 2021! has been it breaches their standards, I believe, related to false advertising. Personally, I think they are mad. Have you had other complaints about Facebook?

    Support message

    ‘Today at 01:45

    About your post
    No one can see your post

    This is how many vegans there are in the world (2021 Update)

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    [Bold letters]You have multiple restrictions on your account

    No one else can see your post.
    We have these standards to prevent
    things such as false advertising, fraud and security breaches.

    This Is How Many Vegans Are In The World Right Now (2021 Update)
    Our standards on spam

    We don’t allow people to get likes, follows, shares, or video views in a way that’s misleading
    to others. We define spam as things like
    * Repeating the same comment
    * Getting fake like, follows, shares or video views
    * coordinating likes and shares to mislead others about the popularity of something

    (Continue) I ticked a circle disagreeing with their decision. ‘I think Facebook should allow such posts.

    Welcome to Big Brother, 2022, Zuckerberg style.

    Paul Campbell


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